Prestigious Yorkshire Enterprise Fellowship Scheme launches December 2007


Yorkshire Forward’s new Yorkshire Enterprise Fellowship ‘pre-incubation’ scheme will be launched in December 2007. The Fellowships are designed to enable post-doctoral researchers from all Yorkshire universities to create a viable business based on their research.

Based on the highly successful Bioscience Yorkshire Enterprise Fellowship (BYEF) pilot programme, the new scheme will cover bioscience, chemicals and healthcare technologies, and will be double the size of the pilot scheme. Funded by Yorkshire Forward, the value of the contract is £2.145M to support 60 fellows over 30 months.

YEF will build on the success of BYEF, managed by YTKO, which helped to establish nine new spin out companies and secure over £4 million of additional funding.

Managed from YTKO’s offices in Leeds, a full-time expert team will build on the experience from the pilot programme and other publicly funded schemes, to deliver practical and pragmatic support for commercialising and progressing the Fellows' concepts.

Peter White, Chairman of YTKO, said,

 “We are delighted to have won the tender for this contract so we can continue to deliver the benefits provided in BYEF. We feel this is a vote of confidence in our ability to manage Enterprise Fellowships and deliver entrepreneurial scientists, world-class ventures and economic growth.”

The Enterprise Fellowship’s objective is to increase entrepreneurial and commercial activity in Yorkshire and Humber universities and to accelerate and support the formation of new science-based businesses here in Yorkshire.

Fellows have to demonstrate a real and sustained ability to develop compelling and world-class science, to understand market opportunities and how to exploit them. The Fellowships are open to applicants from all nine Universities in the Yorkshire and Humber region. Over the course of the programme (2007-2010) a total of 60 Fellowships will be awarded across the eligible disciplines of biosciences, chemicals and healthcare technologies.

A key part of the scheme is the tailored development programme offered to Fellows and delivered by expert trainers.  Topics include ‘Financial Acumen for Directors’ and ‘Raising Finance’.  BYEF delivered over 2500 training hours to the 30 Fellows – YEF will exceed 5000 hours.

A further benefit is the appointment of a personal business mentor with specialist commercial expertise in the Fellow’s area.

Professor Dianna Bowles, OBE, Director of CNAP and Weston Chair of Biochemistry, University of York said
“These Fellowships provide a really helpful mechanism to encourage scientists to take commercialisation forward and meet others with the experience and interest to mentor them on their way into a new world of finance, marketing and SME promotion. I was highly impressed with the programme, and with the team’s role in managing the process.“

Jim Farmery, Head of Innovation for Yorkshire Forward said:

“Yorkshire Forward encourages innovation and entrepreneurship at all levels across the region. The Yorkshire Enterprise Fellowship is designed to ease the route to commercial success for young scientists by providing them with an opportunity to change their bright ideas into marketable products.”

For further information about YEF see our website at



The YEF programme is managed by YTKO ( on behalf of Yorkshire Forward. For further information about the scheme or to discuss your business idea, please contact:

YEF Team
Round Foundry Media Centre
Foundry Street
Leeds LS11 5QP
Tel: 0113 394 4589/4552

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